13 Sep 2020

Alexander Turnbull Library celebrates 100 years of treasures

From Standing Room Only, 1:47 pm on 13 September 2020

The Alexander Turnbull Library's 100th birthday celebrations may have been scuttled by Covid-19, but the treasure trove of New Zealand archives still gets to mark this milestone.

An exhibition of artists' work that speaks to taonga in the library's archives is about to open at the New Zealand Portrait Gallery.

Everything old is New Again: The Turnball Library at 100 matches artists with items from the archives, and it's co-curated by Fiona Oliver.

Gisborne-based Melanie Tangarere Baldwin is one of the artists who signed up for the show.  She created three pieces, each featuring a controversial figure in our history.  One of them is a reproduced Mokomokai or mummified head of the former New Zealand Governor George Gray.

Lynn Freeman talks with Melanie on the line from Gisborne and Fiona Oliver in our Wellington studio. 

Everything old is New Again:The Turnball Library at 100 opens on September 17 at the New Zealand Portrait Gallery in Wellington.